Alien Movie Trivia: Close Encounter of the Third Kind (1977) , 3

“Close Encounters of the Third Kind” was a record-breaker of a film, which surpassed the expectations of those involved in the production. In this article, you will learn two significant achievements that the creation of this movie will go down in history for.

Take Two!

Almost every scene that takes place during the night, as well as the final sequence was filmed at a giant airplane hanger in Mobile, Alabama. Some people inaccurately quote that the scenes were shot in a dirigible.

Record Breaking

Close Encounter of the Third Kind is a record holder for having the most cinematographers on a production , 11 in total , which also included those that worked on the Special Edition.

Roy Neary Was Nearly”¦

A handful of actors were interested in playing the role of Roy Neary. Steven Spielberg encountered interest from the likes of Dustin Hoffman, Steve McQueen, and Gene Hackman. Interestingly, Jack Nicholson was also considered for the role.

Another Impressive Feat”¦

When it comes to the largest indoor film set ever created , the UFO landing site for Close Encounters tops the list , measuring 27 meters tall, 137 meters long, and 76 meters wide. The amount of scaffolding, fiberglass, and nylon canopy used in the making of this film was pretty impressive.

Unscripted Gems

In the dinner scene, the little girl exclaims, “There’s a fly in my potatoes.” This was not in the script and almost caused the cast members to laugh. However, the scene was left in without any editing.

What Set Teri Garr Apart?

All it took was a coffee commercial that Teri Garr starred in for Steven Spielberg to cast her in the movie.
Close Encounters of the Third Kind became one of the first movies that a director’s cut was re-edited, as Spielberg wanted to make adjustments to the original version.

Wishing on a Star”¦

Originally, the film was set to play When You Wish Upon a Star (just as it did in the 1940-version of Pinocchio). However, this ending did not go over very well with test audiences and the idea was ultimately scrapped.

Taking Your Job Too Seriously”¦

In the scene where police vehicles are chasing after the UFOs along the mountain road, stuntman Craig R Baxley suffered serious injuries. In the stunt, he was instructed to skid around a turn and plough through a fence and over an embankment. However, he was traveling at too high of a speed and actually overshot his targeted landing. His car landed quite hard and although he had on a helmet , he sustained injuries to the head and was placed in the hospital for several days.

Sorry Pops”¦

Call it a family affair, but Richard Dreyfuss’s father was used as an extra in the film and actually spent six months on location. Unfortunately, the scenes in which he was a part of never made the final cut.

Scene Flip

When making the movie, the last scene filmed was the opening scene in the desert.

Spielberg Connection

Preceding the release of the human prisoners, the theme song of Jaws is heard while the mother ship is making contact with the base. This takes place at the end of the movie.